My Thoughts About Opossum Lover Kris
A letter to Kris, a transmasculine person, trying to find their way in an uncertain religious and cultural space.
When I heard the news from Momma Pool/Aunt Marvel that you’d been in an accident, I prayed for you to return home safely to your son. I prayed that you would find a more secure footing climbing the tenous path of religious and gender identities.
Instead, you returned to your spiritual home. Now there’s an empty space without you. I know your heart is probably breaking because you miss your son, family, and friends. Your heart is breaking for your frenemies too. You wanted to be their friends even if you were frustrated with some of their actions. And the possums mourn you too, as you were their staunchest ally.
I rarely commented on your posts or followed you directly on Twitter. I liked some of your hilarious posts and left comments of thoughts and prayers for you and your family. You had a wicked sense of humor. You were one of those people who were so intriguing, lovable, and controversial that no one could ignore. (I doubt you wanted to be controversial.) I wanted to understand you, yet I feared to come too close on some of the stickier issues.
I refrained from commenting on many transgender, LGBT, and religious-related posts. I had my libertarian/conservative mindset that sometimes contradicted your and your loving friends’ mindset. I didn’t want to stir the pot because you believed what you believed and I believe what I believe. I engaged where I hoped to have a positive influence.
You had a positive influence on my life too. I learned from your words and example what transgender folx are going through. You experienced real pain and discomfort within your body and your previous marriage. You tried several ways to overcome that pain within your religion’s rules. I admired that you consulted with your bishop to make big choices, such as top surgery. (I know breasts can be heavy, uncomfortable, cause back pain.) I discussed your tweets with my family because I wanted to learn from your experience. I came to different conclusions than you did, but your words influenced my opinions more than I expressed.
I worry and pray for Toby, your family, and Toby’s dad, Nate. I believe you will still have a way to influence Toby. You are his parent and he will feel your love from remaining friends and family. He will also feel your love because your spirit will stand beside him.
Perhaps you will haunt some of the BYU faculty, Utah leaders, and Latter-day Saint leaders — whisper to possums to climb in their shoes. You will have God’s ear and their ears. I hope you will understand your place better in the grand scheme of life and whisper to others that they are needed. I think you will have a great influence wherever your possum spirit roams.
Rest in peace, Kris.